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Apr 15, 2010 11:48 AM

Fired Santa Barbara Co. animal control officer says he's scapegoat

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. (AP) - A Santa Barbara County animal control officer who returned a beaten puppy to his owner, causing community outrage, says he was unfairly fired.

Renato Perez blames a lack of training from County Animal Services and poor communication from sheriff's deputies for his decision to return the 6-month-old pit bull to Francis Henry Takacs.

The Goleta man was cited March 21 for animal cruelty after someone reported hearing the 28-year-old man beating his yelping puppy with a piece of wood.

Perez says deputies never told him the dog was bleeding and there was no sign of trauma. He told the News-Press he was unfairly turned into a scapegoat by Animal Services and fired.

Animal Services director Jan Glick says she cannot discuss personnel matters.
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Information from: Santa Barbara News-Press,
http://www.newspress.com

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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